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DEQ issues air quality advisory for several Central Oregon counties

Oregon Department of Environmental Quality

News Release



Release date:  June 9, 2016


Contacts: Katherine Benenati, Public Affairs Specialist, Eugene, 541-686-7997,

Jennifer Flynt, Public Affairs Specialist, Portland, 503-229-6585,


DEQ issues air quality advisory for several Central Oregon counties


Central, Oregon -- The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality urges residents in Crook, Deschutes, Klamath, and Jefferson counties to take precautions from smoke caused by fires burning in central Oregon and California.

High smoke levels can create health problems for even healthy people so remember to limit your exposure to smoke by keeping windows and doors closed, reducing the time you spend in smoky areas and avoiding strenuous outdoor activity. The elderly, children and those with respiratory diseases can be particularly vulnerable to the effects of smoke.

Smoke levels can rise and fall rapidly, depending on weather conditions including wind direction. For instance, on Wednesday evening elevated readings were reported in Prineville where air quality readings were back to normal ranges – at least for the time being -- on Thursday morning.

People can conduct a visual assessment of smoke levels to quickly get a sense of air quality levels and take precautions.

A number of wildfires have occurred in central Oregon over the last few days, including the Akawana wildfire north of Sisters.

Visit the Oregon Smoke Blog for more information on active fires and air quality, along with tools to help people assess smoke levels in their area. The site is an effort by city, county, tribal, state and federal agencies to provide information for Oregon communities affected by wildfire smoke. You can also follow them on Twitter: @ORSmokeBlog.